The Art of Roughhousing: Good Old-Fashioned Horseplay and Why Every Kid Needs It

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9781594744877: The Art of Roughhousing: Good Old-Fashioned Horseplay and Why Every Kid Needs It
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Everywhere you look, physical play—what some might call “roughhousing”—is being marginalized. Gym classes are getting shorter. Recess periods are being eliminated. Some new schools don’t even have playgrounds. Is it any wonder children retreat to “virtual horseplay” via video games?

But Drs. Anthony T. DeBenedet and Lawrence J. Cohen are here to shake things up—literally! With The Art of Roughhousing, they show how rough-and-tumble play can nurture close connections, solve behavior problems, boost confidence, and more. Drawing inspiration from gymnastics, martial arts, ballet, traditional sports, and even animal behavior, the authors present dozens of illustrated activities for children and parents to enjoy together—everything from the “Sumo Dead Lift” to the “Rogue Dumbo.” These delightful games are fun, free, and contain many surprising health benefits for parents. So put down those electronic games and get ready to rumble!

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From the Author:

Unlike my co-author, Anthony DeBenedet, who grew up in a rough and tumble household, I am a recent convert to roughhousing.  My dad was not a wrestler, and neither were my three sisters (or my mom).  For me, as a kid, "wrestling" meant getting the crud beaten out of me by bigger, stronger, and meaner boys.  So I avoided it when my daughter Emma was little.  But parental love is a powerful force, and when I saw how much Emma loved roughhousing, I forced myself to dive in.  Soon I was a zealous believer in active physical play, and I started spreading the word.  When I became a step-father to Jake, I learned a whole new dimension in roughhousing.  So when Anthony contacted me, after he read the chapter on roughhousing in my book Playful Parenting, I was eager to write this book with him.  Anthony specialized in cool moves and game ideas; I was the "yee-hah, let's have a wild pillow fight" guy.  As we researched the book, we were excited, but not surprised, to find so much science backing up our claims for the value of roughhousing.  And we were delighted by how much fun we had writing it, especially coming up with names for the moves and games.  Happy roughhousing!--Larry Cohen

About the Author:

Anthony T. DeBenedet, M.D., is a board-certified physician in internal medicine and an incredibly active and adventurous father. An avid athlete, he enjoys basketball, running, hiking, and golf. He lives with his wife and three young daughters in Ann Arbor, Michigan.
Lawrence J. Cohen, PH.D., is a licensed psychologist specializing in children’s play and play therapy. His book Playful Parenting is in its eleventh printing. His writing has also appeared in the Boston Globe, professional journals, and a host of national parenting magazines. He lives with his wife and two teenage children in Brookline, Massachusetts.

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